Stories for Prayer

One local guy who grew up in the area came in to sort his benefits, but found the environment really good for his mental health. He says he cannot be open with friends, but feels able to with us. Although his mum attends church, all his local friends are Muslim so he goes to mosque with them.  We’re able to share the gospel plainly with him, urging him not to follow a religion of works, but one of grace. It is discouraging to see people from Christian backgrounds turning to Islam, but so few Muslims turning to follow Jesus.

But there are encouragements too. I recently met for the first time in the area an ex-Muslim, someone who was convinced Islam was wrong. I also often meet another Pakistani who has gladly received Scripture and read it, who loves Jesus and seems full of joy despite chronic pain.

Another guy from north England was placed in a multiple-occupancy house which wasn’t any help for his drug habit. Through a lot of conversations, he has acknowledged his sinful habits and expressed a desire to change. As trust has been built, we’ve been able to challenge him to take drastic steps to turn away from sin and turn to Christ. This battle plays out before our eyes, but we pray there will be a breakthrough and he’ll make it to a Christian rehab he is keen on.

A couple of years ago, I was confronted by an aggressive local guy. Having tried to help him, he blamed me for failing in an injury claim. His mum and dad would stare blankly in the window without ever smiling. But in September I started a men’s English class and computer class, and who should turn up but his dad. He’s come pretty regularly since and taken the time to tell me who Jesus ‘really is’ despite his broken English. We’ve been able to exchange holy books, with him taking home a Bengali copy of Luke’s gospel.

A lady from Eastern Europe came in who was interested in the activities we have for mums and children. She grew up in a nominal Catholic family, wanted a religious husband but couldn’t find one, converted to Islam and married a Muslim man (not sure in which order). Whilst she was very wary of us teaching her children from the Bible, and asked lots of questions about who we are as an organisation, she seemed very happy to have found a place in her neighbourhood to where she can talk to people and bring her children along.

Covid has created further isolation for so many people who already live relatively insular lives, and many ladies who’ve come into the Centre are just desperate for a social sphere, including those who might otherwise go somewhere else without a Christian influence given the choice (of which there is very little at the moment). Pray the Lord would use this opportunity to shine the light of Christ through us into the hearts of many.